Optrak: new funding to help manage the increased demand on delivery organisations and retailers
Optrak has announced that it has received funding from the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK to develop its Optrak Parcel optimisation service for parcel operators to help them manage significant growth and complexity caused by COVID-19 and future proof them for long-term decarbonisation and sustainability goals.
The parcel delivery industry has seen substantial demand increases and operational challenges brought about by COVID-19. Increased volumes and new delivery has severely challenged established distribution models.
Operators have addressed these challenges through mass recruitment and training programmes, as well as investment in new vehicles. However these are temporary solutions to alleviate pressure on the current postcode-based framework of planning and scheduling – which does not scale and is not an environmentally friendly or efficient approach to growing their businesses long term
Optrak is developing a solution for operators that utilises specialised route optimisation techniques, new algorithms and software design to create the new following highly scalable, responsive application:
Optrak Parcel is a complete SaaS web-based optimisation tool that allows parcel operators to blend route optimisation with existing driver area allocation practises to improve route efficiency whilst maximising local knowledge and driver experience to keep delivery times down.
Optrak anticipates the following benefits from the application:
- Improved Efficiency: Across the daily solution, Optrak anticipates reductions in mileage of c. 10%, with more efficient trips, greater vehicle fill and fewer vehicles used.
- Better Customer Service: Optrak Parcel will help narrow the estimated delivery times for parcel distribution as well as improving accuracy to accommodate greater delivery fulfilment.
- Greater Flexibility: Optrak Parcel will allow operators to respond quickly to growth in demand and onboard new drivers without needing to rezone areas.
- Decarbonisation Future-Proofing: EV and low-carbon modelling, including storage lockers for parcels, will be incorporated into the design, allowing operators to transition to low-carbon fleets in the future with the knowledge that planning will take into account additional vehicle requirements and delivery instructions.
Tim Pigden, Managing Director, Optrak comments: “There has long been a belief that you must choose between route optimisation and making best use of driver knowledge. It’s a false choice. These new techniques show that you can use them together to obtain really efficient solutions that are sufficiently flexible to cope with volatile and peak demand.”
Optrak is looking for strategic partners amongst parcel operators in the coming months to collaborate and demonstrate the efficacy of its tools and help businesses better manage the new distribution landscape brought about by COVID-19. More information can be found at Optrak Parcel.